Derby Museum Gala has new home, new day

| January 27, 2011
The Kentucky Derby Museum Gala committee.

The Kentucky Derby Museum Gala committee.

It’s that time of year again. Plans are underway for the 26th annual Kentucky Derby Museum Gala on Friday, April 29. No, that is not a misprint. Churchill Downs has added Saturday night racing, and the gala, which is traditionally on Saturday, has adapted to the change. Mark your calendar.

The gala also will be in a new location. It is almost back where it started. It was first held in the area between the museum and the grandstand. Then it went to the infield (perhaps the favorite spot because of the spectacular backdrop of the Twin Spires). Then, due to all sorts of construction in the infield, it was moved again, this time to the big parking lot on the southwest side of the track. (When it rains, this is known as Lake Churchill Downs.) This year, Churchill Downs is allowing the gala to be held in front of the museum in the Central Avenue parking lot.

“We’re very appreciative of the great partnership the museum and this gala maintain with Churchill Downs. Their support is imperative in order for this event to be so successful,” said Kathy Cox, 2011 gala chair.

Kathy has planned a wonderful evening, and everyone is enthusiastic about working with her. (She has the charming personality and the beauty of her late mother, Helen Mohlenkamp Ulmer.)

Derby Museum Gala Chair Kathy Cox.

Derby Museum Gala Chair Kathy Cox.

This is a superb location for the evening. There will be valet parking as you get out of your car in front of the museum. You will be entertained by the Louisville Youth Choir as you enter the museum for cocktails.

For those of you who have not seen the museum since the devastating flood, you will be amazed. Museum Director Lynn Ashton and her staff performed Herculean tasks, and the museum looks better than ever.

“Hosting cocktails in the museum affords us the opportunity to showcase what this gala is all about. This event is the only fundraiser for the museum’s endowment, and it is crucial to the security of our future. In these uncertain economic times, endowments keep nonprofit entities like ours on solid footing,” Ashton said.

Guests will walk out the front door of the museum, past the statue of Barbaro, and into a big white tent designed and decorated by Libby Rush and her committee. It will be carpeted, and they are having padded comfortable chairs – a first!

As usual, dinner will be by The Silver Spoon, and Korfhages will work their magic with the centerpieces and the landscaping.

The Ken Arlen Orchestra will play.

Linda Jackson is the event co-chair and will head up corporate ticket sales. Carla Grego, the museum membership manager, will do the awesome job of gala coordinator. Tickets are $400.

Cocktails are at 7 p.m., with dinner at 8:30 and dancing at 10.

Chefs for hope

Hunter Wilson, chairman of The Salvation Army Louisville Area Command, is inviting you to join him at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 5, at Park Place on Main for Chefs for Hope, a dinner to benefit The Salvation Army Culinary Training Program. This incredible event will feature six of Louisville’s premier chefs as they come together for one night to provide an intimate multi-course dinner.

If you’re not familiar with the Culinary Training Program, it provides free training for homeless and low-income men and women. Students are provided classroom and hands-on kitchen training that leads to living wage employment opportunities.

Interested in learning more? Check out this YouTube video from last year’s event.

For reservations, call Hunter at (502) 777-6869.

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